Latest on Zach Parise and Ryan Suter, Updated on Sullivan
Updated 11:00 a.m.
The Pittsburgh Penguins like the rest of the hockey world ended Monday having to wait on a decision from star winger Zach Parise. The Penguins were in touch with Parise’s reps at Newport Sports on Monday and spoke even once directly with Parise in the afternoon, but Parise’s camp on Monday gave Pittsburgh no assurance that they are prepared to move forward withÂ them on a deal or on when a decision is going to made.
The Penguins have felt good about their pitch to Parise, but as one team source told me last night, they also felt good in the past about resigning Marian Hossa and Jaromir Jagr and will all know how that played out. With so many dynamics at play here for Parise, the Penguins and suitors in play don’t know how it’s going to play out. All offers and parametersÂ of particular offers are on the table, so it truly is a waiting game for teams.
The sense of the situation continues to be that going into Monday night Parise was seriously mulling offers from the Minnesota Wild, New Jersey Devils, Chicago Blackhawks and Pittsburgh Penguins. Parise though had yet to inform the Detroit Red Wings or Philadelphia Flyers that they are no longer being considered, so it appears they might still be under some consideration. There are some rumblings this morning that Parise is a little more serious about Detroit than first believe, who have been considered longshots to land him.
While internally Parise is believed to have eliminated some teams from his shortlist, one individual close to the situation told me that Parise’s camp wouldn’t start informing teams that they are no longer being considered until Zach picked his destination. That has teams really in the dark right now.
Many are expecting a decision from Parise by late afternoon, but as always nothing is guaranteed here. I’m pretty sure we won’t hear anything first thing this morning as Parise was scheduled to fly out of Toronto around 9:00 a.m. today. Parise is believed to be flying back home to Minnesota this morning where he has a summer home and he is getting married in three weeks. The Minnesota Wild are still considered a major dark horse in the Parise sweepstakes and there’s been whispers for a while now that Parise might be eyeing to play in the Western Conference if he decides to leave New Jersey.
As for Ryan Suter, no one should be surprised at the patient approach his camp is taking. That was the original plan from the start and Suter is still mulling offers from the Detroit Red Wings, Minnesota Wild, Nashville Predators, Pittsburgh Penguins and a massive offer from the Philadelphia Flyers. Word on Sunday night was that the Red Wings, Wild and Predators were widely regarded as being in the lead.
The Penguins appear to remain a longshot here but the team held a number of discussions with agent Neil Sheehy yesterday and what’s interesting in the Suter situation is that unlike Parise, he has yet to speak directly with any teams. That is expected to change today I was told and Penguins remain hopeful that they can make a sales pitch on coming to Pittsburgh. Suter is widely expected to pick his team after Parise and the belief around the league is that if Parise picks Minnesota, there’s a good chance Suter follows him there.
If Penguins lose out on Parise, don’t be surprised if they increase their offer to Suter when it comes to front-loaded money and get very aggressive for him.
Suter has multiple offers in the 12-13 year range.
SULLIVAN RETURN STILL POSSIBLE, AGENT SAYS
Just spoke with agent Steve Bartlett who is believed to have two offers on the table for Steve Sullivan and received inquiries from at least 4 to 5 teams. Bartlett says a return for Sullivan to Pittsburgh is “still possible” but he didn’t sound overly confident as there’s been little to no talks with Pittsburgh to this point. “It’s more up to them after they make other moves, ” Bartlett said. A lot will depend on whether Pittsburgh comes to Sullivan as the sense I got today is that Sullivan won’t be waiting around much longer for them.
Pittsburgh seeking a top-line winger for Sidney Crosby, have not ruled out the trade market.